It seems to have been a while since Glen Hansard, Damien Rice and Jose Gonzalez have released a notable record, and of course Elliot Smith is dearly departed. However, dark acoustic folk fans shouldn’t despair. New artist Calming River is proving to be a more than adequate fit for this gap in the market, and he proves it with new EP ‘The Ones That We Left Behind’.
The lead single ‘Solemn Witness’ can be heard above and is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of quality. To hear the rest (and why wouldn’t you?), head over to http://www.calmingrivermusic.com/
For fans of folk music, the last 7 or 8 years have either been a blessing or a curse. The huge explosion of bands such as Mumford and Sons and Avicii have on the one hand popularised the genre beyond all recognition, but by splicing in pop genre tropes they have also diluted the raw rootsy sound long time fans might be used to.
Flaming June is a songwriter who sets a great example of walking that balance. Her melodies are undoubtedly memorable, and her structures are based on pop music. However, the sound is pure acoustic folk, and the lyrics draw on the tale telling traditions of the genre.
For a great example see ‘Freedom’s Fairytale for Girls’ above, a track taken from new EP in ‘Pursuit of Happiness’. It’s out now and can be found at www.flamingjune.co.uk.